A meeting hall with adjoining seminar rooms, which are tucked away behind shops in Barnet High Street, are to become an Islamic centre for High Barnet.
Currently Muslim Friday prayers and Sunday Madrasah teachings for children are held at the Rainbow Centre in Dollis Valley.
Once the Darul Noor Islamic Centre has its own premises it hopes to offer daily congregational prayer, children’s weekday Madrasah, Islamic classes, activities for women and a wide range of other events.
An offer from the Darul Noor Islamic charity for The Centre in Bath Place – opposite the junction with St Albans Road -- has been accepted and the sale is due to be completed later this year.
The building housing The Centre, which has been on the market for £1.7 million, is being sold by the Template Foundation.
It promotes natural education and arts of human expression and living derived from the Template and Emin archives and the Bath Place premises are thought to be too large for its current needs.
Agents Martyn Gerrard told the Barnet Society that the Islamic charity’s offer had been accepted and that the sale was in the process of being finalised.
So far £550,000 has been raised towards the purchase price and the charity’s website – www.darulnoor.org.uk – says the deadline to raise the remaining £1.25 million is 31 May 2024.
The Rainbow Centre in Dollis Valley has been hosting Friday Muslim prayers (12.30pm to 1.30pm) and Sunday Madrasah teachings (10am to 12pm) for children and young people for the last four years.
Darul Noor says that due to the Rainbow Centre’s imminent move it will have to find new premises and the charity has been “presented with a golden opportunity to purchase a building in the heart of the community on Barnet High Street”.
In an appeal for donations on the charity’s website, Brother Muhammad says the small Muslim community in High Barnet is anxious to establish their own place of worship.
“So many of our kids are lost. We need to find somewhere where our kids can meet, play, and learn Arabic.
“We want to get Muslims to come back and return to Islam, but there are not enough mosques. We hope that with a place of worship they will come back to their religion.”
The charity has emphasised the central location of the Islamic centre, close to Barnet and Southgate College and Barnet Hospital, with town centre car parks nearby.
To further its work and boost the fund-raising appeal, the charity is promoting an open day at The Centre in Bath Place on Sunday 28 January (from 1pm to 5pm) which will be “a fun-filled day full of food, drink, kids’ activities, Mehndi and more”.